May 27, 2014


For the past five and a half weeks, I have been adding bits of my life to a jar on our kitchen counter.  This project was inspired by this post by Trent.
In 38 days, I have collected 42 bits of life.
These "bits" include everything from Eli's sweet little coos to the living room being picked up before bedtime.
Some days I collected several.  A few times, I looked right past the jar on my counter for a day or two and forgot to add anything to it.  In general, I aimed for one to three bits per day. 
Here's what this exercise did for me:
It helped me to keep some degree of perspective on the hard days.  Yes, even on the hard days, there are some really good moments.  And when those moments are hard to recognize, there are still (always) the abundant blessings of the life I lead.  There is always a roof over my head, Brian's sense of humor and the love of one another plus the love of family and friends.
It helped me realize that the little things are (or can be) the big things.  Most days don't include life altering or otherwise spectacular events.  That's okay.  I wouldn't really want them to.  Little things can be big.  Like the day Sam said "co" instead of "moo" when he saw a cow. 
It helped me keep a good attitude for these boys that I am raising.  Being an optimistic and happy-natured person makes my days enjoyable and is one way that I can bless my children.
It made me realize how much I can take for granted.  When I don't stop to consider the joy and the wonder in the little moments it is easy to let days and even weeks pass without contemplating the beauty and the blessings.
This project was pretty similar to other gratitude journal type projects that I have done in the past.  What set it apart was having the jar and a small stack of paper scraps on my counter.  That visual reminder helped me to keep up with the project than I likely would have otherwise. 
I also appreciated the fact that each "bit" was recorded on a separate scrap of paper.  If I would have used a journal for this project, I think that I would have felt like I needed to write more than just a snippet.  This would have held me back from recording at all.  The scraps of paper prevented me from setting some sort of standard or formula for recording and instead allowed me to write exactly what I was inspired to write depending on individual situations and time constraints. 
The jar has been on the counter long enough.  I am really starting to just look right past it.  I'm going to put it away for now and mark my calendar for sometime later this summer or fall for a second run at this project. 

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